Tregidgo, William Mitchell

Educational missionary, born on 25 January 1901. He began his service in Sierra Leone (Fourah Bay College and Wesley Boys' High School), 1924-1927 and the Gold Coast (Mfantsipim 1927-1929). Following a furlough he was transferred to Southern Rhodesia where he gave outstanding service at Tegwani from 1929, then at Waddilove from 1940 to 1959, where he was Principal from 1945. From 1954 to 1957 he was back at Tegwani and in 1959 moved to Salisbury, where he managed the Bookroom until his retirement in 1964.

In 1929 he was expecting Tegwani to become a secondary school, but found he was expected to inaugurate teacher training, about which he said he knew nothing. He nevertheless developed the two-year teacher training courses at Waddilove , firstly for 'Primary Teacher Lower' (post-primary) and from 1950 for 'Primary Teacher Higher' (which requiring candidates to have done two years of secondary education). Alongside his classroom work he took a special interest in training school choirs, and in athletics. He trained Cyprian Tseriwa, the first African member of an overseas team, who set up new 3-mile and 6-mile Northern Rhodesia records. His closing years were spent at Greenways MHA, Bognor Regis, where he died on 22 October 1994.


'Our professional teacher in the Teacher Training Department was Mr William Tregidgo. We all admired him. He was strict and thorough, fair and firm, and demanded the same from us. By his own example he taught us to be punctual. It is twenty five years since we were taught by him, and through the corridors of time and space I can still hear him saying slowly in his clear bell-like voice, "Hammer it, hammer it, and hammer it, into the children's minds."'

Ndabaningi Sithole, African Nationalism (1968), p.16